The Science

7spell is scientifically designed, and utilizes principles based on decades of research in learning, retention, and psychology. Here is a summary of the theory and research behind 7spell's effectiveness.

Craik, F., and Tulving, E. "Depth of processing and the retention of words in episodic memory." Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, Vol 104(3) (1975): 268-294. Print and PDF.

In this seminal study performed at the University of Toronto, Canada, the authors performed a series of tests in which they gave the study participants a sequence of words to learn, with information related to each word as it appeared in order. They discovered that when the information provided stimulated the participant's brain to process the word on a more involved level (referred to as "deep encoding" or "degree of elaboration" in the study), that word was more effectively learned and remembered. With 7spell, the user is given a wide range of additional information about each spelling word, including the word's definition - one of the key factors in enhanced memory, according to this study - as well as usage examples, synonyms, and antonyms.

Garcia, S.M., Tor, A., and Schiff, T.M. "The Psychology of Competition: A Social Comparison Perspective." Perspectives on Psychological Science, November 2013, 8(6):634-650. Print and web.

Each person is influenced by a unique set of factors related to their own status and progress towards goals, but is also affected to a greater or lesser degree by the achievements and perceived standards of the people around them. This analysis of past and current studies looks at the way people view and are motivated by individual goals as well as societal achievement (competition). The authors conclude that effective use of motivational strategies must take both into account. This is something that 7spell accomplishes by providing each user with the ability to set personal goals, earn reward points, and view their own progress tracking reports, and also to publish all of those results on public social media platforms.

Kivetz, R., Urminsky, O., and Zheng, Y. "The Goal-Gradient Hypothesis Resurrected: Purchase Acceleration, Illusionary Goal Progress, and Customer Retention." Journal of Marketing Research, February 2006, 43(1):39-58. Web.

In a study focusing on the influence of reward-scheme programs on behavior, the authors found that when people see visible progress towards their goals they are more likely to increase the activity required to reach those goals. The study also confirms that most people are also motivated by receiving rewards for completing specific activities, even if those rewards are not immediately transferable to actual material or monetary benefits. Status points, rewards, and real-time progress tracking are all methods used in 7spell to encourage frequent spelling practice by awarding points for the completion of exercises and activities. Because the user can access their progress charts at any time, they will always be able to see how close they are to achieving their personal spelling goals.

Buton, M., Winterbauer, N., and Todd, T. "Relapse processes after the extinction of instrumental learning: Renewal, resurgence, and reacquisition." Behavioural Processes, May 2012, 90(1): 130–141. Print and web.

Instrumental learning, also called "operant conditioning," is a method by which behaviors are learned in connection with a stimulus, a reward, or both. In this research done at the University of Vermont, the authors studied the ways in which the information connected to a specific behavior is retained when the stimulus is removed, and how subsequent repetition or reward reinforces information recall and a resumption of previously learned behaviors. They conclude that there are two primary methods of reinforcing active memory and behavior: by creating a different way to test the subject's memory, and by providing the opportunity for intensive focused repetition of that stimulus-behavior response. These two methods are widely used in the 7spell activities and games to create the link between instruction and memory that is so crucial in effective spelling learning on the student's part.

Xue, G., Mei, L., Chen, C., Lu, Z-L., Poldrack, R., Dong, Q. "Spaced Learning Enhances Subsequent Recognition Memory by Reducing Neural Repetition Suppression." Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience 2011;23(7):1624-1633. Print and web. http://doi:10.1162/jocn.2010.21532

In this study comparing long-term and short-term memory, the study authors tested the neural activity of participants as they memorized a set of images. Half of the study participants used massed learning techniques, in which each new image was presented multiple times in a row; the other half were given the images in a spaced repetition mode, where the images were shown in alternating order. Although each participant saw each image the same number of times, the people in the spaced-repetition exercise were able to accurately remember more images, and for a longer period of time. Repetition is a key technique in learning spelling, and 7spell incorporates spaced repetition in two ways. First, the system uses randomized selection of spelling words from the user's current list to populate the activities and exercises, ensuring an interval between word reviews. Second, the system's Word Discover feature provides pop-up instant review of the words on that list, again in random order. By providing users with multiple opportunities throughout the day to read and review their words, 7spell provides all of the benefits of the spaced repetition methodology in its spelling instruction.

Blocki, J., Cranor, L., Datta, A., and Komanduri, S. "Spaced Repetition and Mnemonics Enable Recall of Multiple Strong Passwords." Cornell University Library, January 3, 2015. PDF.

Spaced repetition is a memory training tool that relies on frequent and consistent review of information; mnemonics is a memory technique that involves multiple ways of looking at that information, such as the incorporation of images or story lines. Researchers at Carnegie Mellon University focused on the combination of spaced repetition and mnemonics in evaluating how best to train people to remember specific pieces of information: computer passwords. They found that by combining the two methodologies, the results in both ease of learning and retention were increased. 7spell uses each method separately and together to help users learn and remember new spelling words by using the same words in multiple exercises, presenting spelling words in a variety of formats, and encouraging users to add information related to each word to make a personal connection that helps them to remember that word and its correct spelling.


Top 15 Reasons Every Writer Should Organize a Workplace (Guest Post)

Categories: Tips and Tricks |

Emily Johnson

Have you ever thought about the importance of your workplace organization?

More often than not, people don’t pay attention to their workplace at all. There might be dirty cups and piles of drafts that make your writing surface messy. Maybe the walls are painted color that negatively affects your mood. If you look around, you’ll likely see that some aspect of your workplace leaves much to be desired.

However, workplace organization is not just about looking neat and tidy. There are many reasons to get in the habit of keeping your workplace organized. But before you check the top 15 reasons listed below, take a look at the infographic about workplace organization by OmniPapers.

It is not only interesting but useful as well, so save it and print to get the most out of it later.

Increase Productivity

The fewer distractions you have, the more productive you are. Obviously, the less time you waste looking for things on your messy table the better. Start using drawers and lockers to organize your notes, drafts, and books.

Boost Brain Functions

If your workplace is well-organized, you’ll have time to take more breaks. Take five minutes to drink a cup of green tea. It contains L-theanine that calms your body and boosts brain functions. After drinking green tea, you’ll be relaxed and more focused, and it will be easier to work harder then.

Stick to a Schedule

When you have an organized workplace, it’s easier to organize your life, too. Many people agree that sticking to a schedule is key to a productive working process. Make a plan that includes time for work as well as time for relaxation.

Get the Most Out of Modern Gadgets

Since you’re living in the digital age, make the most of it. There are many modern gadgets that are designed to help writers become more productive. For example, a digital highlighter or a smart pen help to translate and transfer texts. Make a space in your workplace for these device and increase productivity.

Start Writing Faster

Most people know that writing skills need to be perfected. Obviously, a well-organized workplace helps you stay focused, which means you can write more smoothly and quickly. If you do your writing at a computer keyboard, make sure you have the touch typing skills you need to keep up with your thoughts.

Hone Your Writing Skills

Using modern gadgets, investing in online tools and apps, increasing your typing speed, and boosting creativity all help to hone your writing skills. When your workplace is organized, you’ll find that pulling all of these components together is easier, and leads to faster improvement in your skills.

Generate Content Ideas

When you are inspired and motivated, it’s easier to boost creativity. A restful and inspiring workspace will help you come up with innovative and thoughtful ideas that suit your audience’s needs.

Keep Everything Next to You

Writers use many tools daily (notes, drafts, best practices lists, books, etc.). It might seem minor when it happen once, but each time you have to stop and look for one of these things you will be distracted from the working process. Keep everything you need close at hand.

Train Memory

Your brain can be organized, too. With a trained memory, you keep everything in mind and achieve better results. When you are organizing a workplace, think about stickers as a way to keep a back-up memory system. Post stickers with notes on the wall or calendar to keep all information close to you.

Draw Inspiration

It goes without saying that a good workplace has an inspirational corner. Here you can draw inspiration from things you like the most: paintings, quotes, books, music, or photos. Think about things that inspire you and add them to your workplace.

Stay Focused

Being a writer means analyzing your niche, generating ideas, writing articles, communicating with clients and audience, proofreading and editing, and more. Obviously, if you want to be a great writer, you need to learn how to stay focused. The most common way to do it is to organize your workplace to minimize distraction and time-wasting searches.

Improve Health

Be picky about your office stuff to prevent health problems. First of all, your office chair should be comfortable and ergonomic. Be sure it supports the lower back. In addition, many studies have concluded that sitting for long periods of time is bad for your health. Mix up the day to include physical activities while working.

Read “Posture and Ergonomics Improvement Tips” now to learn more about proper ergonomics.

Prevent Eyesight Problems

Proper illumination at your workplace helps to prevent eyesight problems. Choose a desk lamp with light level adjustment, and think about getting a lamp that mimics natural sunlight, if you live in the north. Keeping the light level up will stimulate your brain to keep working, even after the sun goes down.

Create a Better Work Environment

A positive work environment affects your productivity, mood, and well-being in general. If you want to achieve success in your career, you need to create a great work environment, and workplace organization is the key!

Improve the Quality of Your Life

When you are productive and work efficiently, you have enough time to spend on yourself, with friends, and with your family. When your personal life is full of happiness and cheer, you will take that positive energy with you back to the workplace, whether that’s at a desk at home or an office in the city.

Most people don’t think that workplace organization plays a role in career development, but we claim that it does matter. If these reasons are not enough for you to agree with our point of view, drop us a line with your comments and ideas.

Author’s bio: Emily Johnson is a content strategist of OmniPapers, a website about writing reviews for students. She is also a contributor to many websites about writing and blogging. You can always find more works of hers on G+ orTwitter.